Even though, in the UK at least, it remains mighty cold, the past week has seen the start of spring in the Northern hemisphere.
For many people, this is the most beautiful of all the seasons. Flowers are in bloom, lush greenery returns to our rolling hills and cute, furry creatures come out of hibernation. Rebirth and joy are carried on the fresh air breeze! Cue Vivaldi!
Strip away all the romance and there’s another reason that a lot of people love spring – it’s a time to get outdoors and indulge in a spot of gardening.
Whether you are are planting flowers to make gardens prettier or growing vegetables and herbs for cooking, there can be little doubt that there is tremendous satisfaction to be gleaned from getting your hands dirty in the soil.
As ever, your Nokia Lumia smartphone can be of assistance to you. Here are five apps to help you rediscover those green fingers.
Garden 360 (£1.99)
Garden 360 helps you to stay on top of your gardening activities.
It has a friendly and easy to use interface that lets you record which plants you’ve planted, and when you did it. You can add notes to each plant, take photos and keep a journal to monitor your progress.
This app is particularly useful for people growing vegetables in their garden or allotment. It has a tool for you to rate your harvest. Perhaps, in conjunction, with your journal history you’ll be able to identify the conditions or techniques that get you maximum results.
Gardening doesn’t have to be a solitary pursuit. My Garden is a social network aimed at keen gardeners who want to share their knowledge, post their photos, meet up at events and even let other people know if they have seeds for sale.
This app lets you access the My Garden network (it’s free to sign up) on your Nokia Lumia smartphone, read and send messages and keep a gardening to do list.
The social element is quite useful because you discover the most popular plants that are being grown and, if you haven’t already, jump on the bandwagon. There are also descriptions and useful information about the different plant types.
If you’re eager to start gardening as a proper hobby (as opposed to just mowing the lawn and throwing some weed killer around) then this might be a good place to start.
If offers you all the theory and information that you need to become a smart and productive gardener.
Using tutorials, flashcards and quizzes you can learn about plants and seeds, respiration, mineral nutrition and plenty of other green topics.
This is more of an e-book rather than an app but it might be worth investing in if you do have a greenhouse.
There are considerable advantages to growing your plants and vegetables in a greenhouse environment – you can grow food at a controlled temperature all year round.
Greenhouse Gardening includes stories and tips to help you learn and get the most out of indoor growing.
Timing is key if you want to produce good results in the garden and this app helps you to keep track of what you have planted and when.
You set up the app to provide reminders for when you need to water certain plants or when others are ready to be harvested.
The app synchronises with the lunar cycle, which, according to some, can have a direct impact on the quality of plant growth. Sounds ridiculous? Why not download this app and see what all the fuss is about?